[MUD-Dev] Moving away from the level based system

Paul Schwanz - Enterprise Services Paul.Schwanz at east.sun.com
Wed Dec 27 22:47:05 New Zealand Daylight Time 2000


<EdNote: 80 column margins are holy.  72 are saint-like for later
requoting glory.  700+ character margins do not make the holy hand
grenade juggler happy>

> John Vanderbeck Wrote:
>
>> In a way.  You can power by using your skills/spells and using your
>> attributes wich causes them to increase.

Gabriel replied:

[snip]

> I don't really have a better system to provide. In the MUD I've been
> developing, I'm using a time based system - all characters get so
> many points over time to increase skills or attributes (no levels or
> classes).  Bonus points may be awarded through special events or
> quests (for especially good role-play for example, an administrator
> can award the player a few extra points). It doesn't matter if the
> character is logged in or not, so one of the main complaints may be
> that people create a character, then go off and play another game
> for a year, then come back and are not perceived to have "earned"
> the points they have accumilated for advancement. One of the reasons
> I'm interrested in other systems :).


I believe that some form of character persistence (and I consider the
time based system you describe as a mild form just that) is the most
straightforward way to handle macroing.  In a sense, you simply give
everyone the ability to macro.  World Fusion is taking this approach,
but they are using full-blown character persistence, where you
character actually remains in the world in a scripted state while you
are offline.

In order to avoid the complaint that you expressed, I've suggested
breaking skills into many abilities with proficiency rating for each.
You would then need to quest for each new ability, but could "macro"
proficiencies.  For instance, perhaps there is a "thrust" ability
under the "sword" skill.  When you train/macro your proficiency at
"thrust" up to 75%, you can then quest to get the "riposte" ability.
Perhaps you then need to train/macro to 70% in "riposte", 80% in
"thrust", and 90% in "slash so that you can go on the quest for the
"disarm" ability.  And so on.  This is the sort of system I've
proposed for Atriarch, but whether or not it will be used remains to
be seen.

If having advanced skill abilities is designed to be more important
than a flat proficiency rating, then you end up with macroing
punctuated by questing.  One assumes that questing will be
sufficiently diverse, dangerous and difficult so that even the most
ambitious macroers will be deterred.

Even if you don't like any form of character persistence, I think it
would be a good idea to use the quest-punctuated approach to skilling
as a method for discouraging macroing.  Personally, I prefer to let
everyone macro, since I don't like the idea of making characters do
boring and repetitive tasks (alternatively, or even in conjuction with
this system, it would be great if "skilling" were not so boring),
especially not when such is used as a method to push back against
advancement.

--Phinehas

"All things are permissible, but not all things are expedient."

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